Below are interesting stories the Banking.com staff has been reading over the past week. What have you been reading? Let us know in the comments section below.
- Review ’10 / Preview ’11; Banks Call More Shots in PFM, But Nonbanks Still a Presence
Banks are taking greater control of the personal financial management market as the third-party vendors that defined the space increasingly find they must work with banks to survive. Over the course of 2010, many pioneers in the PFM field either shut down or changed their model to place less focus on providing an independent service that is free to consumers. Nevertheless, their run has shown banks that their customers want to do more than they are able to with the rudimentary online banking systems most offer…Analysts said other banks need to adopt this view, because there is still a chance that newcomers can overtake the PFM space if banks do not press their advantage.”
- Security Watch; Weekly roundup of data security developments
The Zeus malware virus continues to migrate and change, shifting focus from financial institutions to governmental agencies. Brian Krebs reported Jan. 3 on his blog Krebs on Security that a malware-laced e-mail purportedly from the White House tricked dozens of government workers. “As you and your families gather to celebrate the holidays, we wanted to take a moment to send you our greetings,” the e-mail said, and encouraged readers to click on the link of an attached greeting card. When they did, their computers became infected with Zeus, which allegedly stole 2 gigabytes worth of PDF files, Word documents and Excel spreadsheets from employees at the National Science Foundation’s Office of Cyber Infrastructure and the Financial Action Task Force, among others.
- Latest ‘Tools Of The Trade’ For Banks put techno spin on managing finances
There’s a lot to attract a customer to their bank’s website these days. They’re easing into online banking and discovering the convenience of bill pay tools. So what’s the latest? Some industry experts say that 2010 is the year of personal financial management (PFM) tools, designed to give customers a complete view of their finances, help them budget, save, and (to a certain degree) invest. PFM tools allow customers to aggregate their various financial accounts (banking, brokerage, loans, CDs, retirement accounts, etc.) on one screen, giving them a “dashboard” view of their holdings. Don’t confuse these tools with the account aggregation technology that made some inroads into financial institutions more than a decade ago, but then for the most part lay dormant because of consumer disinterest.
- Game-Changing Tech Trends for 2011
Along with revitalized spending power, bank IT executives will have to deliver on technology initiatives with measurable improvements in revenue growth, customer retention and compliance. So placing the right bets on key technologies that truly can transform the business will be more important than ever. BS&T’s offers predictions of the hot technologies that will be banking game-changers in the year ahead.
- 2011 Spending Forecast; 11 Bank IT Trends for 2011
A number of factors converged at the end of 2010 that will make 2011 a big year for mobile banking, most notably payments collaborations between card companies, banks and telecom firms. As stakeholders figure out how to carve up the market, expect more mobile payments apps-as well as other mobile financial services offerings that take advantage of RDC and GPS. The expansion of PFM as the entry point for Web banking portends a revolution in self-service that includes mobile, dashboards, advanced IVRs, call centers and high-touch branches. Banks have looked at social media as almost an experimental tool that’s nice for some customer service queries, but largely unknown for other uses. That’s about to change as analytics and content tracking make CRM tools out of Twitter and Facebook.
- Shifting Gears; iPads and Tablets Invade the Enterprise
Union Bank has only just started distributing iPads for corporate use, but the waiting and seeing that often accompanies new technology is already ending. “We really don’t need to push the iPads, people know the benefits and are clamoring for them,” says Steve Chong, manager of messaging at Union Bank in San Francisco. The bank just introduced iPads to a limited number of staffers across a broad range of functions, a deployment it expects will expand in the coming year given the early popularity of the devices. The bank is at the fore of what looks likely be a major embrace of iPads and other similar tablets, which are larger than smartphones, lighter than laptops and relatively inexpensive.
- Bank Branches of the Future Compete with Online Banking
Right before the Holidays, Citibank cut the ribbon on its new $3 million dollar flagship branch, located in New York’s Union Square and is the newest push by the big banks to bring back the branch banking experience. There is no denying that the banking experience has definitely evolved over the last year. Mobile banking has become a growing trend – ready to overtake online banking, while the way we manage and handle our money has also changed, if not adapted to new banking fee requirements. As a USAToday.com article reported this week a number of the large institutions have begun planning an introduction of new services in hopes of capturing more consumers across multiple services, including mortgages and wealth management.